The WAITING ROOM => GENERAL KNEE QUESTIONS and comments (good for new threads) => Topic started by: ron1228 on April 12, 2011, 12:13:53 PM

Title: Hi, I'm new here. tibia fracture
Post by: ron1228 on April 12, 2011, 12:13:53 PM
Iím new here and have some questions.
First off Iím 67 years old, retired and moved to Cebu, Philippines from Las Vegas in January 2011 to marry my fiancť and to live permanently in Cebu. We were married 2 months ago, on Feb 12, 2011.
In March, I was in a motorcycle accident and had a non displaced tibia plateau fracture.
Had a preliminary x-ray at a clinic and was told about the fracture and the doctor at the clinic recommended a doctor at a private hospital in the city of Cebu.
Went there that evening and he took a few morť x-rays and decided that yes I did have the tibia fracture and the best way with the least invasive surgery was to put in two screws to hold the bone together and then put on a soft splint rather than a hard cast.
The healthcare system isnít too refined here and I found out when I checked in that in order to be admitted to the hospital, I would have to put up a partial payment of 10,000 pesos, about $230. So I did and was admitted. I got a private room with air conditioning. When I checked in, they gave my wife a box with a fork and spoon, which I had to use for every meal. We had to clean them after meals. A bottle of water. If I wanted more water we had to buy it. And a few other things.
They did quite a few tests to determine if I could withstand the operation even though I told them I had just been through it in September.
After them satisfying themselves that I could have the operation, I had to pay 30,000 pesos for the operating room, about $670. You see the picture here? Also, the hospital was old and looked dirty. The nurses didnít do much so I had to have a ďwatcherĒ with me at all times in case I needed something. Anyway, enough about the facility.
The doctor sent in a representative that sold the screws that I needed and I had to pay for them in cash, $350. I was pretty hesitant of doing this surgery because I didnít like what I saw as far as cleanliness but really had no choice.
After the operation, he said it went well and the screws were in and holding the bone together and the splint would keep it immobilized. I was worried about getting an infection but he told me he was going to sterilize the screws before putting them in and they gave me quite a lot of antibiotics, both pills and through IV.
Several days there and I went home with the splint to held everything together.
On April 10, 2011, I went to see him and he said there is no need to take an x-ray because there wonít be any indication of healing yet and had my wife go to a sporting goods store to buy a knee brace with hinges on each side of the knee.
I went home in that brace and it just didnít feel right but, I did the knee bending excersizes he told me to and while doing them it felt like the bone was moving so I put the old brace back on and went to see him the next day. He did take an x-ray this time and it showed a new fracture right across from the original.
He wanted to put in a plate and more screws and other hardware but I said no. at this point, I had zero confidence in him or the sanitary conditions of the hospital.
He then said he could put it in a hard cast for about 4 to 6 months but after it did heal I probably wonít be able to walk because the knee would be almost seized up from inactivity.
I was going to go back to the USA to have it taken care of correctly but I donít know if my son and his family will be able to take care of me while the healing is going on so right now Iím not sure what to do. I have wrapped the knee in some ace bandages to try to keep it from moving in the splint but donít know if that is going to help or not.
My wife canít come to the USA with me yet because it will be 8 or so months for her visa to be issues.
Iím checking into going to the top private hospital here. I have been told that it is the best and most of the doctors are really good and lots of them trained in the USA.
If anybody can shed any light on the new fracture and if it could have been caused by the wrong splint, I would appreciate it.
And any information on my being able to work the knee back into shape if it is in a hard cast for 5 or 6 months would be helpful too.
Also, if the soft splint was supposed to help heal the bone in about 6 weeks wouldnít a hard cast do the same and I would be out od it in 6 to 8 weeks because it would really keep the bones aligned?
Thanks in advance for any help or suggestions, Ron
Title: Re: Hi, I'm new here. tibia fracture
Post by: maryc on April 12, 2011, 05:17:28 PM
Ron - sorry for all the problems you're having.  It is possible that the "second" break was there all along and just didn't show up due to the angle of the xray.  My TPF was only suspected in the xray - I needed a CT Scan to confirm it.
This is a layman's interperation of the healing process.  Be sure to verify this information with a doctor you trust.  Usually when hardware is put in, it will stablize the break enough so that you can walk on it in about 6-12 weeks.  Your break is by no means healed at that time, just stable enough to walk on.  Without the hardware to stablize the break you would need to keep the leg conpletely stablized during the entire healing process of 12-24 weeks, hence the long cast with no knee motion.
While your knee is in this fixed position you are likely to have scar tissue form.  This tissue becomes hardened and in many cases would require surgery to remove so you can bend your leg again.
My first thought would be to check with the Embassy and see if there is a way that your wife join you in the US on a "hardship" visa of some sort.  Alternately, how about going to some other country like Australia or NZ?
Wish I had an answer for you.
Sending healing rays your way

Title: Re: Hi, I'm new here. tibia fracture
Post by: maryc on April 12, 2011, 05:21:29 PM
I forgot to tell you - most of us TPF's hang out int The specialist's office ---> bone breaks around the kneee - if you post there you might get some additional answers to your questions.

Title: Re: Hi, I'm new here. tibia fracture
Post by: ron1228 on April 13, 2011, 07:57:07 AM
Maryc, thanks for the info. I would love to pm you but since i just joined, i dont know how. if possible could you pm me and i think i would be able to answer you or my email is [email protected]
I have read some of your posts and read what others on here think of you and would love to talk to you.